I’ll let you in on a little inside joke. In times of either incredible stress or lighthearted fun, my colleague in K¹² Marketing, Jess Juliano, and I will look at each other and say, “Ohhh, we sure do have some fun here at the K¹²s!” (I have no idea why we add the “S”. It’s just one of those things friends do.) I suppose that we say this in stressful moments for irony’s sake and in more festive times to acknowledge that, yep, working with smart, passionate and driven people IS fun. Stressful, sometimes, but fun. Sunday night was one of those really fun nights on the job, because Jess and I, along with Tracy Sloane—Head of School for our CAPCS virtual academy in Washington, DC—attended the DC Metro Moms event in Arlington, VA.
The DC Metro Moms, part of the larger Silicon Valley Moms, is a group of professional women who are extremely active in social media and who blog about a wide range of topics of importance to moms parents. And here’s another bit of inside info: I’m not a mom. I am certain I never will be. And yet, every time when I’ve gotten together with the moms of this group, I always come away more excited and energized. about what K¹² offers families than I was before. These moms, whether or not they have a specific need for the K¹² option, seem to always just “get it.” I’ll explain what I mean there, but let me back up and give you some context.
As Director of Social Media, I not only interact with K¹² parents on Facebook, Twitter, thebigthinK¹² and this blog, I also build relationships with external bloggers whose audience includes thousands of parents who might benefit from what K¹² offers. Sunday night's event, which took place at a hotel near the Pentagon, was broken into two parts: First, an open “roundtable” discussion where bloggers and “brands” held an open discussion about how (and how not) to build those important relationships. It was interesting to hear the moms talk about how companies are still clumsily “spamming” bloggers to try to get their products mentioned in their blogs. I left that session very grateful that K¹² has gotten great advice on how to do it right. Which is to say, slowly and personally; by building relationships one mom at a time.
The second part of the night was really fun. It’s so great to talk about K¹² with folks who know little or nothing about what we do. Let’s face it, sometimes describing the whole “K¹² thing,” with its myriad variations, can be confusing. But when you’re talking to a mom like Kristen at Baby Brewing and she says, “I get it. Why would I want my kid to sit in a classroom for seven hours and get one hour of instruction while the teacher spends six hours trying to get some other kid to sit down?” We all just laughed and said, “Yep. She gets it.”
This event was also great in that it gave us a chance to reconnect with moms whose blogs we’ve been following for months. About six months ago, we had dinner with four DC-area mom bloggers—Leticia from Tech Savvy Mama, Amy from Teach Mama, Jean from Stimeyland and Jessica from A Parent in Silver Spring. Happily, all four of them were in attendance last night, and Jess, Tracy and I got a chance to talk to them about what they’ve been up to and about what K¹² has been doing- and discuss what we might be able to do together in the future. Of course, we also enjoyed meeting some new folks for the first time and we look forward to reading their blogs in the future as well.
Based on what we know about the DC Metro mom blogs so far, we suggest you take a tour of them yourself! Here they are: Aimee at Smiling Mama, Amanda at Parenting by Dummies, Amie at Mamma Loves, Amy at Resourceful Mommy, Cecily at Uppercase Woman, Dawn at My Thoughts Exactly, Delora at A Spiced Life, Devra at Parentopia, Elaine at Connor and Helen Grow Up, Elena at A Day in the Life, Gayle at Every Day I Write a Book, JJ at Caffeine and a Prayer, Jenni at Oscarelli, Jessica at Crunchy-Chewy Mama, Jill at Musings from Me, Joanne at PunditMom, Jodi at Jodifur, Karen at Snarkshelf, Kate at The Big Piece of Cake, Kimberly at Petroville, Kristin at Well Read Hostess, Melissa at Stirrup Queens, Michele at Scraps of My Geek Life, Michelle at Wife and Mommy, Nicole at BananaBlueberry, Rebekah at Mom-in-a-Million, Robin at The Not Ever Still Life, Sandie at UrbanMama, Sarah at The Travel Mommy, Sarah at Sarah and the Goon Squad, Stacy at Mama Law, Stacy at The Fabulous Miss S, Stephanie at Dial M for Minky, Stephanie at Lawyer Mama, Sue at Laundry for Six, Sue at Motherhood and Me, Susan at Toddler Planet, Suzie at Confessions of a Not So Well Behaved Woman, Thien-Kim at I’m not the Nanny, Vanessa at Chefdruck Musings, and Vicky at The Mummy Chronicles.
Whew! Just from that list you can imagine the fun we had - and we sure do have some fun at the K¹²s!